Earlier this month, rumors began swirling that Karl Rove may soon leave the White House, in part because he and incoming Senate Minority Whip Trent Lott (R-MS) have failed to get along. The New York Times then reported that Rove would be staying on, but claimed the White House was compensating for his “limited influence in Congress.”
In an interview this morning on Fox News, Lott intensified the growing discord between him and Rove, stating, “I’ve had problems with some of the conduct of Karl Rove.” He added that he has a good relationship with “most of the people” around the President. Watch it:
After Lott said in late 2002 that, had the country elected Strom Thurmond as President, “we wouldn’t have had all these problems over all these years,” Rove quickly orchestrated his ouster, supplanting him with White House-favorite Sen. Bill Frist (R-TN). During the midst of the CIA leak scandal a few years later, Lott suggested that Rove should resign and that Bush should “reach out and bring in more advice and counsel.”
WALLACE: Senator, over the last four years, though, you did have some harsh things to say about the White House, and I wonder whether you still stand by them. You said Karl Rove should resign. Still believe that?
LOTT: Look, I’ve been in sort of a liberated mode. Some people say that they hope in my new leadership position, I won’t give that up. I do believe in trying to be honest and respectful. I’ve had problems with some of the conduct of Karl Rove. But I have a good relationship with the President and most of the people around him. I think Josh Bolten is doing a great job as his chief of staff. You know, the president and I can communicate, and I want to see him succeed, because he is the President. And we have to work with Democrats because they are in the majority.